Work’s been busy – more so than in the past five (ish) years.
Which is a very good thing, but it’s been so dry for so long that all of us are working ourselves to a shell of what we could be had we paid attention in class.
Six hour turnaround? Sure, no problem.
Four am call two hours away? I’m there.
Three 19 hour days in a row? I love overtime. My kids don’t need me to read them a story.
In the past two months, I’ve worked as many hours as I had in the previous year (or so it feels like), and I’ve had some insanely short turnarounds – I went from one job right to another and my justification was that since I was in the condor for the first job, I could sleep.
One sleeps fitfully, at best, in a condor, so I had a few hours of shallow napping, took a shower, changed my clothes, and then worked another 14 hour day.
That, my friends, is madness, and I shouldn’t have done it as I was not able to work safely.
But I’m afraid to say no to anything.
It’s been so slow for so long and so many of us have been struggling, that we can’t really wrap our minds around the idea that it may be busy for quite some time and we can, if we like, turn down a job if we feel that we’ve just had a bit too much that week. It’ll be okay. There will be more work.
But that small part of my mind that functions as the town crier for impending disasters starts shrieking that this will be the last day I get for a long time, I won’t make my rent, and then I’ll end up face down in the gutter covered in my own filth and broken dreams.
For some reason, I believe that alarmist voice much more than I believe our call steward, who seems to think that there will be a lot of work for the next few years, at least.
I need to work on that. I’d love to be able to take a vacation and know that I’ll still have work when I come back.
That hasn’t happened in years.
For any of us.